Health

Net Doktor@flickr.de

Like Germany as a whole, the Stuttgart Region has a dense network of hospitals, doctors and chemists. Thanks to the obligatory health insurance, the necessary treatments remain affordable for everyone.

Health insurance and services

Everyone resident in Germany must have health insurance. You can either be insured through your employer, through the Federal Employment Agency or directly through your own health insurer. You can choose your health insurer at will. Guidance on the 52 health insurers in Baden-Württemberg can be found in the list of health insurers on the website of the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Funds (Krankenkassenliste des GKV-Spitzenverbands, in German only).

The basic health insurance offered by the statutory health insurers comprises the following services:

  • outpatient GP treatment, for example in GP practices

  • dental treatment

  • medicines and therapeutic aids and appliances

  • inpatient stays and treatment, for example in hospitals

  • necessary medical rehabilitation measures

  • services related to pregnancy and childbirth 

Private contributions are sometimes payable, for example for prescriptions. Services that go beyond basic insurance protection must be paid for by you.

If your spouse is not working, you can insure him/her in the statutory health insurance system. The same applies with respect to your children. You will not incur any additional costs as a result.

Helpful hint: When you take out health insurance you automatically receive nursing care insurance.

Health card
© Andreas Morlok / pixelio.de

As soon as you are a member in the statutory health insurance system, you will receive your electronic health card. You present the card when you visit the doctor so that the doctor can charge the health insurer for the treatment later. The health card is valid in all EU countries as well as in Iceland, Lichtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.

Visits to the doctor

In Germany you are free to choose which doctor to attend. Normally you will go to your GP first. You can find a GP or specialist consultant for example:

  • on the website of the place where you live, which you can find using the municipality search in the right-hand column
  • in the list ('Weisse Liste') published by the Bertelsmann Foundation
  • using the search function ('Arztsuche') on the homepage of the KVBW (Kassenärztliche Vereinigungen Baden Württemberg)
  • in the phonebook or the yellow pages under the section for doctors ('Ärzte')

When you have found a GP, it is best to call the practice to arrange an appointment. The GP will examine you, inform you about vaccinations and many other issues and if necessary will refer you to a specialist or a hospital. You only go directly to a hospital without a referral letter in an emergency.

If you need a doctor outside of the opening times for your GP, you can call the Germany-wide phone number 116 117 for the stand-by doctor service. In the case of an acute emergency, i.e. a life-threatening situation, dial the emergency number 112.

 

The Stuttgart Region Welcome Service is an offering by Stuttgart Region Economic Development Corporation (Wirtschaftsförderung Region Stuttgart GmbH) for Stuttgart Region Skilled Specialists Alliance (Fachkräfteallianz Region Stuttgart), funded by Baden-Württemberg’s Ministry of Finance.